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Drug info - Buying codeine cough syrup in the US

Discussion in 'Codeine' started by hamsterdam, Mar 15, 2009.

  1. hamsterdam

    hamsterdam Silver Member

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    SWIM heard it's possible to get a small amount (like 4 oz) of a codeine cough syrup preparation in the US without an Rx just by going to the pharmacy.

    If this is possible, what states allow it and how do you go about asking for it?

    I live in NYC
     
  2. OsCarwild

    OsCarwild Newbie

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    I think you got bad information. Codeine is a scheduled substance, thus can only be obtained with a prescription.
     
  3. RaverHippie

    RaverHippie Gold Member

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    from various posts on this message board I have heard that the codeine containing cough syrup is located behind the counter and is dispensed at the pharmacist"s discretion.
     
  4. gmeziscool2354

    gmeziscool2354 Silver Member

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    so raver, You could go into a pharmacy and get codeine preparation in the US with no sort of prescription or doctor recommendation/phone call?

    that doesn't seem right, there is not nearly enough codeine abuse in areas that I am familiar with for this to be the case in those areas. perhaps in certain states.

    either way, I have read the same posts that you refer to. he has yet to see anything to verify tho,
     
  5. RaverHippie

    RaverHippie Gold Member

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    I remember reading a few reports of people getting it from pharmacists as I outlined above. I did find an article about the syrup which only described it as if it were prescription only http://www.usatoday.com/news/nation/2006-10-18-lean_x.htm?csp=34

    then I also found this on a question+answer site for someone asking the question of where to get the codeine syrup otc:

    over-the-counter codeine

    I don't know what the regulations are in Georgia, but federal regulations and the regulations of the commonwealth of Virginia allow cough syrups to be sold OTC with limited amounts of codeine in combination with other drugs. You are required to sign a log with your personal information to obtain the drug, but do not require a prescription.
     
  6. ConcertaXL

    ConcertaXL Newbie

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    Four states in the Union allow some C-V products to be sold with no RX. CIII codeine preps are federally RX only (so no chance of getting T2's or above from a discerning pharmacist.)The codeine/Prometh syrup is also federally RX only because of the Promethazine which is not an OTC ingredient, but I have heard of Cheratussin AC/ Robitussin AC being offered with no prescription in certain states. Usual conditions:behind the counter, only 1 purchase per month, photo ID, log entry, minimum age 18/21. (similar to PSE laws.)
    New York is pretty strict on meds (eg the Triplicate script law on strong opiates and benzos, the Mandatory Generics law which forbids branded product dispensing without a DAW on the script) so it does not permit this AFAIK.
     
  7. Lady Codone

    Lady Codone Titanium Member

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    I would also like to know which states do/don't allow this, as she's heard this many times but with no specific info as to WHERE this is legal. SWIM actually DOES have frequent chest colds/bronchitis and can't always afford a DR. visit, so this info could potentially help her...one thing she's NOT gonna do is walk up to a random pharmacist and ask for it without knowing the laws in her state.
     
  8. ConcertaXL

    ConcertaXL Newbie

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    In theory all states of the USA can legally offer this product. Only a few have banned all codeine sales without prescription (I do not know exactly which) but Tennessee, North Carolina, Washington, Ohio, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Arkansas and Louisiana are known to carry it. Large pharma chains (CVS etc.) will not sell under any circumstances, old-fashioned family businesses possibly will. State laws require photo ID in some but not all of those jurisdictions.
     
  9. brandon561

    brandon561 Newbie

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    Does anyone know if you can purchase this anywhere in florida?
     
  10. SmaLLtown

    SmaLLtown Silver Member

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    Codeine cough syrup was available otc in the US in the 50's. Its no longer legal here. Only place close to us is Canada.
     
  11. 1korger!

    1korger! Silver Member

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    Someone i know just recently found this information out and went to a pharmacy to attempt a purchase. He was successfull so he went to about 4 other pharmacys and purchased from each one. You just have to ask the pharmacist and sign a little log book thing. This person was in washington i believe.

    Codeine is semi-legal if its under like 10mg/dose or somethin
     
  12. SmaLLtown

    SmaLLtown Silver Member

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    ยง290.2 Exemption from prescription requirements.

    The prescription-dispensing requirements of section 503(b)(1) of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act are not necessary for the protection of the public health with respect to a compound, mixture, or preparation containing not more than 200 milligrams of codeine per 100 milliliters or per 100 grams that also includes one or more nonnarcotic active medicinal ingredients in sufficient proportion to confer upon the compound, mixture, or preparation valuable medicinal qualities other than those possessed by codeine alone. "

    Apparently in some states its perfectly legal. It is usually called Mytussion AC. Now in Texas, the drank capital of the world, all previous attempts, by me more than a decade ago, were dismissed. Swim forgot that you could hop over to Mexico and recieve codeine cough syrup w/ephedra.

    SmaLLtown added 1 Minutes and 59 Seconds later...

    correction: Mytussin AC
     
    Last edited: Apr 30, 2010
  13. gmeziscool2354

    gmeziscool2354 Silver Member

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    Called my local rite-aid they said required a prescription although the md state laws allow possesion of schedule 5's without one and im 100 certain of that. There is still one ma & pas type pharmacy in town so will try them next. I know now to 95% certantity its totally possible to buy codiene syrup otc in virginia, so we'll see
     
  14. Balzafire

    Balzafire Palladium Member

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    Swim lives in Georgia and while at a pharmacy today, asked the pharmacist about this.
    She said that yes, cough medicine containing codeine can be purchased without a prescription in Georgia from behind the counter with a signature by an adult.
    However, she said that the big chain stores, as a policy, won't sell it that way. One needs to go to an independent, or "Mom & Pop" type drug store to buy it, preferably ones regular drug store where they are used to seeing you come in occasionally and will recognize you. She said if they have never seen you before they may be reluctant to sell it to you.
    So there you are.... at least in Georgia, the question is answered.
     
    Last edited: May 14, 2010
  15. jamajessie

    jamajessie Silver Member

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    I know a fish that has swam into their local mom and pop pharmacy and received a bottle of cough syrup with codeine. The fish just simply asked to get a bottle of cough syrup with codeine. The fish just simply had to sign a book and show ID. 1 minute later the fish was handed the bottle and out the door they swam.

    Is swam even a word lol?
     
  16. RoboJesus

    RoboJesus Silver Member

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    It is definitely legal to buy small amounts of codeine cough syrup (4oz or less) OTC in Washington state where I live. That doesn't mean it is easy to find though. None of the larger pharmacy chains that SWIM have tried will do this including Rite Aid, Walgreens, Target, Safeway, Costco, and CVS. All of these pharmacists at these locations were polite but explained that while Washington state law allowed OTC sale of codeine cough syrup, that their company policy did not allow for it. Most of the time they said they didn't even have the proper log book that is required by law.

    The best places to look are independent pharmacies which, unfortunately, are getting more and more rare. A lot of these places are happy to sell OTC codeine cough syrup and simply make you show ID and sign the log book. I had almost given up on trying to find codeine syrup OTC, mostly because he is now prescribed 15 fentanyl patches every 30 days along with 60 5mg oxycodone and, as such, his tolerance is high enough that codeine is pretty much useless except for withdrawing. Unfortunately though I was withdrawing a week ago so anything seemed worth a try. I eventually just called all the pharmacies in the phone book and asked if they carried it and then went to all the places that said yes.
     
  17. Herbal Healer 019

    Herbal Healer 019 Silver Member

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    SWIM just got some today (hes on the east coast in the US) for bursitis of the elbow & running low on shitty tramadol & only got 2 5mg percocets (oxycodone) & 1 7.5 vicodin (hydrocodone). Please note before-hand he had no prescription nor a doctors reccomendation, just medical documentation of his injury.

    I went in to walmart at first at which the pharmacist politely realized his need for the medicine but was not allowed to dispense the drug without prescription due to store policy. He then explained that most if not all CVS larger 'brand name' pharmacies will not dispense it without a prescription. I was recommended to to a privately owned pharmacy and they actually hadnt had a request for the drug in 10 years according to the pharmacist although he did eventually give me a 4 oz 10mg codeine per 5ml in a syrup form with 100mg guafenisen/ 5ml. I think they are hesitent to dispense this stuff. Until the store owner/co-pharmacist intervened the origional pharmacist said he didnt think they had a log or even carried it.

    I think you'd have a much harder time obtaining this syrup if you couldnt explain your pain and show some documentation (which I had). Maybe he's wrong but he got some vibes that they were only willing to dispence it OTC because they need the business.

    In my state it is legal to obtain one 4 oz bottle of codeine containing syrup per 48 hours. It is all up to the pharmacist though.

    I wouldn't expect to just walk in there and ask for it without a good/legitamite reason and get it like that unless you were tight with the pharmacist i. e. he knows you have a condition/ your a regular.

    Im not sure you'd want to tell your doc you do this though (drug seeker red flags; you know how shitty doctors are getting about narcotics)

    I wish I could just go back in 2 days and get more but he doubts they would happily do so again without hesitation.
     
    Last edited: Jun 6, 2010
  18. Balzafire

    Balzafire Palladium Member

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    Swim thinks this was a very bad idea. If those logbooks are entered into a database, You could have lots of explaining to do and this could even cause problems with his legitimate scripts.
     
  19. mr op8

    mr op8 Titanium Member

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    There are certain states (only a very few) in the US where they can sell codeine OTC. But only in very, very small amounts.

    Ohio is one such state, I believe.

    Still, one does not see it on the shelf. It would always be behind the counter. One would have to ask the pharmacist for it.

    Even at that, in the few states that allow it OTC, one wouldn't see it in mainstream pharmacies like CVS or Walgreens, probably only in the mom-and-pop types.

    Of course, most people here probably know that it is readily available in Canada.
     
  20. RoboJesus

    RoboJesus Silver Member

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    Yeah SWIM definitely left out the part about waiting 48 hours between going to each place (it is legal in WA to get 1 4oz bottle every 48 hours). Getting a bunch of it on the same day from a bunch of different places would certainly be a bad idea.